By Adama Tine
The Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) has imposed a temporal ban on the export, re-export and cross border movement of flour from The Gambia to other countries with immediate effect.
The move came at a time when the ministry through its continuous monitoring and surveillance of essential food commodities observed a limited supply of flour at the retail end.
According to the ministry, the objective of the ban is to support domestic supply with a view to containing price hikes of flour.
The ministry said this is due to the fact that the average retail price of flour in neighboring countries has gone up, and as a result, some traders are buying some of the lower priced flour in the country and exporting it to neighboring countries, thus increasing the pressure on the demand for flour in the country at the retail level.
“Given that flour is a major input to the production of bread, any increment in the demand may increase the retail prices of flour and subsequently bread in the country,” the ministry said.
The ministry therefore notified and urged the public to bring to the attention of the law enforcement agency of any such prohibited activity. It said it will continue to monitor the market and will take appropriate measures when necessary.
“We look forward to the cooperation and understanding of the public and the business community in particular,” the ministry said.